Saturday, August 29, 2009
Another International Equestrian Added to Roster
Robert was fortunate from the start to grow up fox hunting and showing in the horse crazy town of Hamilton, Massachusetts. After seeing his first Ledyard International Three-Day Event, his attention was quickly drawn to the ultimate equestrian sport of Eventing. Throughout the 1970’s and 80’s Hamilton was headquarters for Jack LeGoff and the USET Three Day Event squad. This proved very influential as Robert knew from an early age that representing his country internationally would be his goal.
After graduating from the University of Massachusetts with a Mass Communications major and a Music Performance minor, Robert ventured into the horse business full-time with long time friend and supporter Leila Clay. Robert and Leila started C&C Sporthorse, Inc. in 1990 and soon moved the business from Hamilton to its current location at Tanglewood Farm in Southern Pines, NC.
Horses owned early on by Leila, such as Rufus, Simon Rattle and Class Action, laid the groundwork for Robert having the privilege of being asked to ride Deirdre Pirie’s equine star Chevalier. “Charlie” is the horse that would ultimately take him to the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000. In addition to an 8th place finish there, this partnership also produced top placings at Fair Hill, Rolex Kentucky and Burghley (UK).
In 2003 Robert once again represented the USA, this time winning team gold at the Pan American Games aboard Leila’s UK beautiful grey import Dalliance. Robert and Dalliance went on to future successes at Fair Hill, Rolex and Burghley.
Robert is still actively competing at the international level. His current brightest prospect is Dustin. After a strong showing at the Jersey Fresh CCI** in May of ’09 they have their sights set on Fair Hill International CCI*** this coming October. (cont’d) When not riding and coaching, Robert enjoys tennis and skiing. He also is heavily involved in the governance of the sport, most notably serving on the USEF Board of Directors and as Chairman of the USEF Eventing High Performance Committee. He is also on the Board of the newly formed Professional Riders Organization (link) and is vice-chairman of the USEA Professional Horseman’s Council. He previously sat on the boards of the USEA, USET and was Chairman of the USEF Active Riders Committee from 2001-2008.